Envy: Asia Tour 2011 in Shanghai

I started listening to Envy back in 2007 (proof!; albeit in a not-so-great light), and when doing random searching lead me to this page, I shot an email and had my tickets reserved. This was bound to be AWESOME

And about 40 people believed that, too. I’m a little sure though that some were just curious, and wouldn’t mind spending 200RMB on some visiting Japanese rock band.

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Friday Gigs: Basil Valdez + Sound-alike + Tadhana

Basil Valdez
Basil Valdez

The past week around Eastwood City, huge streamers were up of a Basil Valdez gig that Friday at the mall open park. I haven’t shot any performances there, thought for the past month, there’s almost always one, though none really got me interested. Until this one.

I can’t speak for any other generation, but for someone who remembers, say, the multiplex vs. minus one debate, and growing up Catholic, Basil Valdez is a prominent fixture in one’s music awareness. Despite any taste I may have developed, outgrew, or acquired, I’ll be keeping his songs in my music library, with beaming pride. How many times have I played Let The Pain Remain with eyes closed in my Shanghai apartment whenever my roommate was out? Countless.

It was raining most evenings that week, but we were spared that night. I wasn’t there as early as I planned, but I was glad enough to see most seats were occupied, by an expected age-group: folks who were done sending their kids to finish their college degrees, and their own pa’s and ma’s.

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Two Gigs and a Slice of Opinion

The scouting for gigs part of doing gig photography one would actually make way for, spend time on, is running on the slim side these days. Sure, there are some foreign acts visiting, but then, I’m not your usual I-shoot-anything-basta-music dude. Not that I have the highest standards, but like any sort of creative output, being popular and/or being not of-our-shrores doesn’t kindle my interest instantly.

Saguijo would usually be my default location, despite it being too far from where I normally am. I’m used to the shooting conditions, and the no-smoking policy is a big plus. I like Route 196 for how homey it feels, but it does feel too cramped. Club Dredd? I don’t know what happened, with it being the closest to work, but I don’t hear much from it anymore, with no band lineup signs outside, too. I haven’t been to the new Penguin cafe, nor to the Cubao X of the south, B-side. Cubao X? I’m too square to be a Cubao X habitue.


I was at Cubao X a few weeks ago to attend a photography exhibit, where I met poet/singer/songwriter Jess Santiago, who I’ve known since the 90s, most significantly because he 1) was played over at LA105.9, and that 2) he has an album called Obando, his hometown, and my hometown as well. I was without camera, but got to borrow one at that time when he was requested to perform, with a borrowed electric guitar.

Jess Santiago

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Roots Rock Reggae


Two names sold me to this gig: Jun Lopito, and Cocojam. I haven’t seen either of them, and as a 90s kid, I find it imperative that I take the chance to watch them weave magic on stage.

Thanks again to my Facebook network, I found out about this event. This is an event. I’m not a reggae-head by any stretch, but I don’t see these names come up on gigs often. Moreso, not in today’s de-facto rock club: Saguijo.

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Almost There

Up Dharma Down
Up Dharma Down

If you’ve read the previous entries, all you get is incessant whining about not getting the photos I want, when I shoot. This is different. This is me, crossing my fingers, since I think I’m getting over the creative slump.

First gig shoot happened last Thursday at Route196, when two bands interested me, since I haven’t seen them yet: Techy Romantics, and Gorgoro. The Techy Romantics had Ryan, songwriter/drummer from the now defunct Narda, and Camille, who, if I got my Narda history right, was originally considered to front the band. Now they’re married, and now they do electronic music, the sort that would easily get tagged as chillout-with-vocals.

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